Duterte to send representatives to Congress, embassies


DAVAO - Presumptive president-elect Rodrigo Duterte will be sending out personal representatives to key sectors including Congress, judiciary, media, foreign embassies and churches to call for unity under his administration.

In a press briefing, Duterte spokesman Peter Laviña said a committee will identify "personal representatives of the mayor so that we will be able to send them out and bring the message of the mayor extending the hand of friendship, calling for unity and cooperation as well as opening direct lines to the new administration."

He said the representatives will go to "various embassies as well as various departments, Congress, Senate, the judiciary, media outfits, civil society, various churches and all other key sectors that we need to ask for their help and cooperation."

Duterte is poised to become the next president after garnering over 15 million votes as of Thursday morning, based on the partial and unofficial results of the Commission on Elections transparency server.

He earlier said he is seeking to unite the country after a vicious and divisive presidential campaign.

After voting, Duterte calls for 'healing'

Laviña earlier said Duterte will pursue annual economic growth of 7-8 percent, or even higher, in a drive to cut poverty. "If we want to reduce the poverty rate, we need a higher growth," the spokesman said.

Under President Benigno Aquino, average annual economic growth has topped 6 percent and this year's target is 6.8-7.8 percent. With a report by Reuters